The Conspiracy of Capital
Law, Violence, and American Popular Radicalism in the Age of Monopoly
Published by: University of Massachusetts Press
In this detailed cultural history, Michael Mark Cohen argues that a legal, ideological, and representational politics of conspiracy contributed to the formation of a genuinely revolutionary mass culture in the United States, starting with the 1886 Haymarket bombing. Drawing on a wealth of primary sources, The Conspiracy of Capital offers a new history of American radicalism and the alliance between the modern business corporation and national security state through a comprehensive reassessment of the role of conspiracy laws and conspiracy theories in American social movements.
"Cohen draws upon a strong archival base and an impressively wide range of texts to provide an illuminating analysis of how the politics of conspiracy was central to this era's culture of popular radicalism."—Shelley Streeby, author of Radical Sensations: World Movements, Violence, and Visual Culture
"As the subtitle suggests, [Cohen's] ambitious, well-documented study explores the nexus between law, violence, and popular radicalism in an era when near-monopolistic conditions prevailed in the battle between labor and capital."—CHOICE
"Examin[ing] the conspiracy rhetoric of the American Left as part of an interlocking system of political thinking that enmeshed both radicals and corporate conservatives . . . Cohen ably analyzes the contours and dynamics of a dialectic of conspiracy rhetoric that spun into powerful worldviews fueled by the periodic unmasking of actual conspiracies on both sides."—The Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era